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International Monetary Fund

This paper examines economic developments and policies in Canada during 1990–95. Spurred by the robust growth in the United States and the easing of monetary conditions between 1991 and 1993, economic growth in Canada continued to strengthen during 1994. Real GDP grew by 4.5 percent in 1994 after growing by 2.2 percent in 1993 and 0.6 percent in 1992. Economic growth in 1994 was led by exports and investment in machinery and equipment. However, growth was more broadly based in 1994; private consumption strengthened, and there was a rebound in residential and nonresidential construction.

International Monetary Fund

This paper explores the factors that have led to a Canada-U.S. productivity gap using a sectoral growth accounting approach. Both fiscal and monetary policies have had significant effects on the saving rate. The Canadian dollar’s appreciation was followed by a protracted period of exchange rate weakness. This paper reviews the institutional aspects of Canada’s real return bond program. The Canadian system provides a successful model for pension reform. Free trade has helped promote the integration of U.S. and Canadian economies, but significant differences remain.

International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper reviews Canada’s business tax system, looking at the incentive effects of the country’s business tax regime and their implications for output and employment. It presents estimates of marginal effective tax rates on corporate-source income in Canada and comparator countries across sectors, asset classes, means of finance, and asset ownership. The paper also examines labor markets in Canada. It notes that unemployment rates in Canada have risen across all demographic groups, industries, and regions, although young and less-educated workers and workers in agriculture and primary industries have been most severely affected.

Gregorio Impavido
Stress testing is a useful and increasingly popular, yet sometimes misunderstood, method of analyzing the resilience of financial systems to adverse events. This paper aims to help demystify stress tests and illustrate their strengths and weaknesses. Using an Excel-based template with institution-specific data, readers are walked through the basics of liability valuation and stress testing of assets and liabilities of a typical defined benefit plan.
International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.

This issue of the IMF Research Bulletin opens with a letter from the new editor, Rabah Arezki. The Research Summaries are a "Primer on 'Global Liquidity'" (Eugenio Cerutti, Stijn Claessens, and Lev Ratnovski); and "Trade Integration adn Business Cycle Synchronization" (Kevin Cheng, Romain Duval, and Dulani Senevirante). The Q&A column looks at "Seven Questions on the Global Housing Markets" (Hites Ahir, Heedon Kang, and Prakash Loungani). September 2014 issue of the Bulletin also includes updates on IMF Working Papers, Staff Discussion Notes, and Recommended Readings from the IMF Bookstore, as well as special announcements on new staff publications and the Fifteenth Annual Jacques Polak Research Conference. Also included is information on the latest issue of �IMF Economic Review� with a link to an article by Paul Krugman.

Mr. Alfredo Cuevas, Mr. George A Mackenzie, and Mr. Philip R. Gerson

Abstract

Public pension systems around the world have been criticized in recent years for some serious flaws, including the excessive burden they impose on the public finances and their depressing impact on saving rates. This study analyzes the impact of pension systems and pension reform on saving, paying particular attention to the impact of the introduction of defined-contribution plans like that of Chile. It also surveys the literature on the impact of pension regimes on saving, discusses some recent reforms, and addresses the role of private pension plans.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

In Austria, the ratio of the elderly to people of working A. age will double over the next 50 years. This dramatic demographic shift—brought on by a major decline in fertility and mortality rates since the 1960s—will be more severe than in many other industrial countries (see chart). It will increase public spending on pensions, health care, and long-term care and decrease tax and social security revenues. In a new IMF Working Paper, LeifLybecker Eskesen concludes that ensuring long-term fiscal sustainability in Austria will require bold reforms.